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TCL Cumbria – designers & innovators of new concepts for industry, technology, environmental, education, fitness and health sectors



An artisan (from French: artisan, Italian: artigiano) is a skilled craft worker who makes or creates things by hand that may be functional or strictly decorative, for example furniture, decorative arts , sculptures, clothing, jewellery, household items and tools or even mechanical mechanisms such as the handmade clockwork movement of a watchmaker. Artisans practice a craft and may through experience and aptitude reach the expressive levels of skills of an artist.

The adjective “artisanal” is sometimes used in describing hand-processing in what is usually viewed as an industrial process, such as in the phrase artisanal mining. Thus, “artisanal” is sometimes used in marketing and advertising as a buzz word to describe or imply some relation with the crafting of handmade food products, such as bread, beverages or cheese. Many of these have traditionally been handmade, rural or pastoral goods but are also now commonly made on a larger scale with automated mechanization in factories and other industrial areas.



Mechatronics is a multidisciplinary field of science that includes a
combination of mechanical
engineering & electronics, as well as computer engineering,
telecommunications engineering, systems engineering and control
As technology advances, the subfields of engineering multiply
and adapt.

Originally, mechatronics just included the combination of mechanics and electronics, therefore the word is a combination of mechanics and
electronics; however, as technical systems have become more and more complex the definition
has been broadened to include more technical areas, extending to


Designed and created by Cumbrian inventor and engineer Ian Stephenson of Artisan Mechatronics, Dr Driver is the operator of the STEAM Time Machine!


Under the TCL banner of ARTISAN MECHATRONICS, the project places the emphasis on the importance of ART & DESIGN in developing products to support learning of STEAM subjects

The subject of engineering can be complicated and, maybe, somewhat serious, which it is. By starting with the humorous slant of a portfolio of themed sketches and prints featuring ‘DR DRIVER’, ARTISAN MECHATRONICS is aiming for a better understanding of all STEAM and related subjects applied in the world of manufacturing and process industries.

By exploring craftsmanship from its origins to the modern day, designing and developing new and additional materials, a range of different resources is being introduced to promote –

Science, Technology, Engineering, Art (& Design) and Mathematics

subjects for all ages – for pupils in primary schools, junior schools and at secondary schoolacademy level and beyond. ART, CRAFTS, GAMES, PUZZLES, are predominant.

An extensive programme of resources is underway for students at colleges and apprentices at work. It includes electro-mechanical kits to help understand the structures of working machinery and allied engineering, all types of mechanical power and control systems while raising awareness of careers in engineering.

Most products will be entirely suitable for home study and making activity.






Artisan Mechatronics is putting together a programme of Teaching & Learning Resources with the emphasis on ART DESIGN & MAKING providing products in three main categories covering all areas of STEAM


Coloured Visuals – Colouring Sheets & Books – Colouring Materials – Interactive Colouring


Drawing Stencils & Aids – Collectibles & Maps – Science Fact & Fiction – Card & Board Games


Jigsaws & Puzzles & Play Parts – Craft Materials – Assembly Kits – Active Technologies

Artisan Mechatronics is led by DR DRIVER and his team, Hacker and Maker, the two ‘live-wire’ apprentices, and Prof, his remarkable canine assistant

Together they use the STEAM TIME MACHINE to connect the Past to the Present and to the Future, making journeys of exploration, meeting inventors and their inventions, watching artists and crafts people apply their skills, making the links with today’s Scientists, Technologists, Engineers, Designers and Mathematicians – all working together through Space and Time on solutions for a sustainable Future

"Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand."
Albert Einstein

Who is ‘DR DRIVER’?

Is he an Engineer of the Past, the Present or the Future? What worlds does his STEAM TIME MACHINE venture into? An eclectic mix of whacky drawings and interactive media was introduced at a school’s workshop to trial the concept.

School’s workshop - Teacher Feedback Quotes:

“All the children had a fantastic morning with you and are now fascinated with the conductive ink – we are going to put the pictures on display and get them connected to a power source, so they light up on the wall for as long as they can.”

“As mentioned, the children are learning about electricity and different energy sources in both science and geography, so this workshop helped them to see energy in yet another way, which is brilliant.”

“Working in a team is always a fantastic tool to use because it is a life skill that quite a few children need work on!”

“All children really enjoyed the colouring – and this would work well for all Primary Children up to Y6.”

“For future workshops it might also be great to have a ‘making’ activity.”

“Your contribution was fantastic, your delivery appropriate to the ages of the children and you had them in the palm of your hand once you told them you were an inventor!”

“As Science Lead in school I am interested in keeping in touch to track the progress of your project – putting Art into Science and D&T is a great way to grab the imagination of some children who find science a bit heavy going but love being creative.”

“As a teacher I like the idea of collectable cards on engineering and technology and also the assembly kits and puzzles – anything that is engaging, and fun helps children learn much better.”

“I liked the fact one of Dr Driver’s apprentices was female – stereotypical ideas are formed early on in life and some girls in school, even now at the age of 7, believe that girls are not scientists or engineers because they don’t see any!”

“Everybody really enjoyed themselves, thank you again, and I look forward with interest to the next stages of your project. Don’t forget us if you need any little helpers, all children would be willing to take part in future workshops should you require and ‘guinea pigs’!”

COMING SOON – look out for the announcement of a brand-new schools’ activity for the Academic Year 2021-2022, with special interest to STEM Clubs

Artisan Mechatronics will sponsor a series of COMPETITIONS with prizes for Primary & Secondary age groups. It will promote collaborative working between pupils/students in many aspects of the STEAM curriculum Focusing on ART & DESIGN & MAKING the competition is aimed at encouraging contributions from all youngsters whatever their subject preference – Science, or Mathematics, even English and Music or History and Geography


To register your interest, complete the Contact Form below and sign-up for regular newsletters and advance notices on the availability of resources

‘DR DRIVER’ says
This way for more information...

Complete the form below and sign-up for release dates on concept categories and regular newsletters, featuring new products, project modules and receive early notice on competitions and prizes

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